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Veteran Sri Lankan singer and entertainer Desmond De Silva has passed away at the age of 77 in Melbourne, Australia. 

He had reportedly passed away due to a sudden heart attack. 

Regarded as the ‘King of Baila’, the legendary singer was born in Matara in 1944 while he launched his career in popular music in 1963 as the lead vocalist of the Fire-Flies.

He also performed with leading Sri Lankan pop groups – ‘Spitfires,’ ‘Gabo and the Breakaways,’ and the ‘Jetliners.’ 

In 1976 he decided to form his own band, “Desmond and the Clan”, which performed in various countries in Southeast Asia, including the Maldives.

Known for his popular renditions of Sri Lankan ‘baila’ music, Desmond celebrated 40 years in show business in 2019.

He has had a string of baila hits including: ‘Polkatu Hande,’ ‘ Yaman Bando (Wally Bastiansz),’ ‘Chuda Manike,’ ‘Mamma No,’ ‘Miss Sri Lanka,’ ‘Hai Hui baby Achchi (Wally Bastiansz),’ ‘Rajasangabo’ ‘Komali Pane,’ as well as popular recordings of anonymous baila songs. 

He is also known for a whole range of ‘Party Time’ non-stop baila music.

He has performed his hits in several major cities around the world including Los Angeles, New York, London, Auckland, Dubai, Bahrain, New Delhi, Singapore and Melbourne, where he had been living for the past couple of years.